This Russian Beef Stroganoff Recipe is prepared with strips of seared beef, gently combined with mushrooms and onions sautéed in butter. The main ingredients are combined in a rich cream sauce with a hint of sherry and serve over buttered noodles.
2.25 lbs. high quality boneless rib eye (+- $27.00) or tenderloin steak, sliced – across the grain – into slivers. Select steaks at least 1 inch thick.
16 oz Baby Bella mushrooms, sliced
2 medium yellow onions, sliced thin
1 package wide egg noodles
6 tablespoons of butter
16 oz sour cream (use regular sour cream – low fat just does not have the flavor body to create a rich sauce)
2 tablespoons or more Maille© Dijon mustard (moutarde “originale” – in other words strong and zesty)
Heaping tablespoon of tomato paste
1/4 cup of cooking sherry
Coarse salt, freshly cracked black pepper, parsley
Preparing the ingredients is the most time consuming part of this recipe.
My personal preference is not to freeze the meat so that it is easier to cut. Why? Once frozen, the meat cannot be dried sufficiently to sear almost instantly. Believe me, I’ve tried it and the result was expensive bits of stewed beef.
You can use this type of gadget to cut thin slices of frozen meat but I just make sure my knife is very sharp and I make just as sure my fingers are not in the way of the blade.
Pat the steaks dry with paper towels, cut into sections across the grain and then into thin strips. Set aside.
In a small mixing bowl, add the sour cream, mustard, tomato paste with some salt and pepper. Set aside.
In a medium sized frying pan, add 2 tablespoons of butter to a pan, melt until foamy and add mushrooms. Season with salt, pepper and parsley. Sauté until the mushrooms have rendered most of their liquid and begin to brown. Remove from the pan and set aside.
In the same pan, add another 2 tablespoons of butter then add the sliced onions. Sauté over low heat until translucent and they take on a light caramelized color. Season with salt, pepper. Remove from the pan and set aside.
While the onions are slowly turning translucent, heat the water to cook the pasta.
NOTE: At this point, the recipe will be completed quickly and served as soon as the sour cram sauce heats through.
Use a 12 inch or larger shallow frying pan (like a Mauviel) to sear the pieces of meat in a single layer over high heat.
This step is quick as the meat should only be allowed to sear, brown and be turned over once. Fry until the meat releases its juice – probably no more than 2 minutes.
Lower the temperature under the pan and add the mushrooms and onions. Stir to combine well.
Spoon the sour cream mixture evenly over the meat, distributing the sauce evenly across the pan. You want this step to be quick so the sour cream coats the pan contents in the shortest amount of time.
Time to multi-task! This is when I drain the pasta and toss it with a spoonful of butter. Divide in serving bowls or plates.
Allow meat to heat through just a minute or so longer.
Pour the sherry (beef bouillon or a combination of both) across the pan contents and stir to combine. Heat through.
The meat is ready to serve.
Ladle over hot buttered egg noodles with a side of steamed fresh Haricots Verts
Beef Stroganoff is not an inexpensive dish. It’s the superior quality of the meat and the method that make this a near authentic recipe.
That is not to say that the dish is not tasty when prepared with ground beef but ground beef will never be steak – in flavor or consistency.
You can use sirloin steak but the less tender the steak, the tougher the finished bits of meat. I sear the meat only to remove the raw taste. Make it a prime sirloin.
With this recipe, the idea is that you want to be able to distinguish the distinct flavors of seared steak, buttery mushrooms and lightly caramelized onions The sour cream sauce just happens to be the perfect combination of flavors to enhance each of the three main ingredients.
The sauce is not prepared in large quantity and it keeps a creamy texture. There is just enough sherry to allow it to coat the pieces of steak.
For a more liquid sauce, add a little more sherry or, better yet, a small amount (let’s say 1/4 to 1/3 cup) of very rich beef bouillon. Dissolve 2 teaspoons of beef soup base into hot water. The sauce coats the meat and there is a little more to ladle on the pasta. Lots of sauce is not the idea here 🙂
To prepare this dish, you will need a couple large soup bowls when you set aside the mushrooms and onions. You will also need heavy frying pans in two sizes: a medium one to fry the mushrooms and onions and the larger one to sear the pieces of meat all at once.